Sunday, March 08, 2009

Chronicling heartbreak through Hip Hop albums(Vibe Throwback)

Originally I had planned to start this post off with a pretty definitive statement: "I was not born an asshole". But that plan was quickly abandoned as soon as I remembered that I'm the guy who once licked an entire Birthday cake when I was 5 years old so the other kids in attendance couldn't have any. As a baby I would deliberately embarrass my mother by making hideously loud grunting sounds while soiling my diaper in the most public of places. When I was a child I had a penchant for going up to special needs children, pointing, then loudly asking my mother "Mama, what is wrong with that baby's head?" Alright, so being an asshole is ingrained into my DNA. So let me revise the original statement: "I was not always the asshole in the relationship"

Listen, as cathartic an experience it has been sharing my exploits with the rest of you: Inexplicable bathroom boning at my father's wake, stripper "love" in the backseat of my muscle car that leaves traces of tiny colored metal shards everywhere, acts of sodomy in garden variety places of worship, a custom made gloryhole in the middle of my living room, rather intimate craigslist inspired encounters where more times than not the words "Why are you laying on me, does post coital affection cost extra?" are uttered. It would be truly funny if my habit of screwing low self esteem having women with daddy issues at strange locales had no place of origin, if it was just a very simple desire to notch my Chewbacca Sized conquest belt. Unfortunately the back-story of the "disillusioned dater" is not only a sordid one, its an incredibly old one as well - I'm sure hieroglyphics exist of men sport-fucking strangers to mask their wounded hearts.

Glory holes, serenading women after three minutes of love-making with "Didn't I blow your mind this time..", and an unfortunate episode of mid-cunnilingus vomiting aside(It was due to alcohol, look where your mind is at!) - I've decided to stop using my failed relationships as an excuse to act reprehensibly. You can't complain about the game if you haven't set foot on the playing field for damn near a decade, if it doesn't work out then it doesn't work out - Hip Hop will see me through like it has before. Here are a few examples.

The Fat Boys: "The Fat Boys" - The fact that I've never had a white women counting ceiling tiles, or immediately running back and telling her closest friends that the myth about black was complete and utter horseshit is amazing when you break down my life story. For one thing, my parents put me in a private school called "Virginia Beach Country Day School". I played soccer for many years. I've ridden a skateboard for the better part of 30 years. My Ipod is a incoherent mixture of classic Hip Hop tunes and 80's New Wave. I have long dreadlocks for Christs sake. You'd think I was genetically engineered in some mad scientist's lab for the sole purpose of bedding white women. I've never been with a white woman, but I can't say that I've never tried - enter "Kirsten". Kirsten was an overdeveloped 5th grader whose liberal use of make up and prepubescent sweater puppets harmoniously summoned my nether region like a snake charmer. Even though I've never had game, the silly jokes and note passing started to win her over - so much in fact that she decided to take a monumental step for a grade schooler and give me her phone number. We talked for weeks, I'm sure if I had transcripts of those conversations I'd be really embarrassed, but I specifically remember my heart going all aflutter every time we spoke. That was until her old man got wind that I was black, so not only did the phone calls stop but she gave me the cold shoulder at school - I never blamed her, she got her marching orders. I was absolutely crushed, and the only thing that got me through those early heart palpitations was The Fat Boys first album. I really can't explain why, the only song on the record that came close to dealing with mistreatment is a track that I absolutely hated - "Don't You Dog Me" - but the escapism of of that record seemed to make my reality at the time a lot more livable. A few years later we caught up, she apologized, and told me that she still liked me but could never date me as long as her father was alive. I recently ran into Kirsten at a local supermarket, she was doing well, very casually told me that he father had died months earlier. I was tempted to ask, "Will you date me now?", but even an asshole like me found that to be disgusting.

Boogie Down Productions: "Edutainment" - Its ironic that the much slept on "Edutainment" helped me through a pretty trying time - being that the whole sordid affair came to an ultra violent conclusion. I happened to be dating a girl from another High School, something that I will warn my kids against whenever someone sees me fit for procreation purposes - and what I didn't know was that she had maintained a relationship with a drug dealer during the tenure of our relationship. The only reason I knew about that troubling fact is because homeboy decided to pay me a visit one day at my High School, make some rather veiled threats, and proceed to quickly flash a shiny object tucked in his belt that I assumed was a gun. The violent conclusion came when me and and a friend decided to show up uninvited to his house party armed with baseball bats and bad intentions, proceeding to beat the street pharmacist senseless and sucker punching anyone who looked like they had an issue with it. If that wasn't enough, the adrenaline getting the better of me, after smashing his car for 5 minutes I just decided to push his vehicle into the lake besides his house. Alright, you got me, there wasn't really any heartbreak involved with this story - I didn't give two extremely busy bowel movements about the girl in question. I just wanted to write about a random act of violence that I'm pretty fond of, and "EDutainment" was the album I was bumping at the time. Sue me.

Diamond D and the Psychotic Neurotics: "Stunts, Blunts and Hip Hop" - The good thing about a blog is that its extremely cathartic, being able to work on my issues and pour my heart out at the same time has indeed added years to my life. The bad thing about a blog is that really good people can get hurt on your self serving journey to feel better about yourself. I recently reconnected with one of my first real girlfriends on Facebook, she has grown to be quite the woman who has a lovely family to boot. We had a lovely conversation online that lasted for the better part of an hour, I no longer held any ill will towards her - I mean, for Christs sake it was 16 years ago. For the longest time I blamed her for starting a vicious cycle of soul crushing women spawned from the devil destined to ruin me. Sure, I don't believe that now, but blog archives are a motherfucker.(She read some not too kind things) I don't regret anything, its the risk you pay when you decide to emotionally unload in any journalistic form - but two things are abundantly clear. 1) I have nothing but love for her and wish her the absolute best. 2)Our break-up was extremely painful to me. So painful in fact that I'd drive around for days on end, sobbing, playing Diamond D's "Stunts, Blunts and Hip Hop" until the fucking tape popped. What a fun album that was. Even though Kanye West is a "producer on a mic", I'll put this album against any of Mr. West's records any day of the week.

Mos Def - "Black on Both Sides" - The funny thing about this CD is that it came out two years before the end of my last relationship, coincidentally around the same time I realized that it was destined for failure. The worst feeling in the world is being madly in love with someone who you aren't compatible with, and being so emotionally needy that you allow it to run its course instead of growing a pair and doing something about it. But regardless of our countless efforts to make it work, the both of us constantly cited the time that we'd been together as a reason to stay together. Not for nothing, I'm not in the habit of quoting cross-dressing 80's pop stars with drug problems, but Boy George had it right: "Time won't give me time/And time makes lovers feel like they've got something real" Amen. So as my father was dying of cancer, and I stayed in a relationship where my only option at the time was waiting for the other shoe to drop - Mos Def's CD "Black on Both Sides" saw me through a pretty agonizing time in my life. I've always contended that that album, along with Ice Cube's "Death Certificate", is the most well rounded Hip Hop album content wise. That brilliance of it made her friends less annoying, my father's withering state a little more bearable, and the prospect of me soon becoming a single man something that I could deal with. My old man died 2 months before the end of our relationship, which was sort of interesting because like my father - I knew that our unhappy union was terminal two years prior as well.

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